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Poster: orchiddoctor Date: Dec 29, 2006 12:50pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Poor Donna

Remembering the fact that pre-wall of sound, the p.a. was much more primitive and muffled. Often, the p.a. was whatever the venue had. All the speakers were still covered with tie dye, and there weren't all that many of them, so the sound was limited. Listen to old sbds--good ones--and you'll often notice that it isn't the tape--it's the sound system. Thus Donna didn't seem that bad--just a tad out of place in this all boy band. She also didn't really sing that much until much later in '72. Her "blend" is absent on all sorts of stuff she would later, uh, sing. I honestly don't remember her having any real presence at that point in time. Besides, Pigpen was still there!

And, really, it must have been hard for her to get in tune with the loudness of the instruments and the often poor quality of the monitors.

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Poster: cosmicharlie Date: Dec 29, 2006 1:36pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

she thought she was in tune....Donna sang when Pigpen was playing keyboards?

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Poster: elkdog Date: Dec 29, 2006 7:13pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

>Donna sang when Pigpen was playing keyboards?<

Yeah, but mostly on a rarely mentioned tour through Europe in 1972.

This post was modified by elkdog on 2006-12-30 03:13:38

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Poster: deadmax Date: Dec 29, 2006 5:34pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

Ha Ha!

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Poster: RobRizzo Date: Dec 29, 2006 6:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

She at least had her shit together by '75, '76. Anything before is very difficult to enjoy, to say the least.

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Poster: skuzzlebutt Date: Dec 29, 2006 10:21pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

IMO Donna had a pretty voice but not an especially powerful one. She was fine on the soft stuff but the louder she had to sing the more out of key she got. This wasn't a studio environment, this was a rock band with a megawatt sound system playing to thousands of people. Maybe it was what we've always heard, that she couldn't hear herself properly on stage, but I think that was just folks bein' nice.

Agreed that things improved after the hiatus. Anything (well, most anything) from '73-'74 is just brutal to these ears.

Still, she was part of it for better or worse- she was out there trying and for that I dig her.

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Poster: rosey842 Date: Dec 29, 2006 5:49pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Poor Donna

Donna was just in Harrisburg, PA tonight with her new band called "Kettle Joe's Psychedelic Swamp Revue." I didn't know it until it was too late. Not the biggest Donna fan but it would have been interesting to see what they sounded like.